Sales 

Coronavirus is a car sales roller coaster with an uncertain end

With no handy playbook, no precedents for the toxic economic fallout from COVID-19, the only thing predictable about auto sales is now unpredictability. And with viral spikes forcing fresh public restrictions — including in California, the nation’s largest auto market — any automotive recovery seems likely to follow the same topsy-turvy course.

Analysts say the worst may be over. But they can’t be sure. The pandemic drove auto sales to a sickly, 30-year-low in April, as Americans bought just 633,000 cars — down 53% from April 2019, and worse than any sales month of the Great Recession in 2009. 

June brought a few rays of hope. But June’s annualized selling rate of 12.9 million units was still a stark reminder of the booming 17.2-million pace of the previous June. Second-quarter sales at General Motors, Ford and FiatChrysler fell 30% or more. Tesla’s mere 5% drop —and a stock

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EU new car sales down 22% in June as demand remains weak

15 May 2020, Lower Saxony, Lehrte: New Volkswagen vehicles are parked in a parking lot of a logistics company. Photo: Julian Stratenschulte/picture alliance via Getty Images
15 May 2020, Lower Saxony, Lehrte: New Volkswagen vehicles are parked in a parking lot of a logistics company. Photo: Julian Stratenschulte/picture alliance via Getty Images

New car registrations ticked up a little in June in the European Union as coronavirus restrictions lifted, but were still 22.3% lower than the same month a year ago.

Statistics from the European Automobile Manufacturers Association (ACEA) today said that across the EU, just 949,722 vehicles were sold last month.

While that is a slight improvement from May, when sales were down 52%, June’s numbers highlight just how slowly demand is picking up despite dealerships reopening as job insecurity and fears of further waves of the pandemic put people off big-ticket purchases.

Over the first half of the year, registrations were down more than 38% compared to the first six months of 2019.

Chart: European Automobile Manufacturers Association
Chart: European Automobile Manufacturers Association

All EU markets saw sales declines,

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Shoppers Eye 4th of July Car Sales as Pandemic Expedites Car-Buying Plans

Some consumers may celebrate the birth of the nation by buying a new car, as Fourth of July car deals and pandemic concerns provide an incentive to shop.

Automotive marketplace Cars.com surveyed consumers who have an interest in acquiring a new car to see if the COVID-19 outbreak was impacting their plans. The survey found that not only were most respondents expediting their timeline for getting another car in part because of the pandemic, but 44% said they were prepared to close the deal on a vehicle over the holiday weekend.

A myriad of reasons to buy

Respondents gave a host of reasons for why they were quickly moving forward with their car-buying plans.

More than half — 52% — said they want something new, or at least newer than the vehicle they already own. More than a third of respondents — 42% — said they believed the deals that

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